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Norway – Self-Employment

Breakdown of how self-employment works for expats in Norway

Self-employment is a popular choice for expats living in Norway, especially those who wish to have more control over their work and enjoy a flexible schedule. To become self-employed in Norway, expats need to follow a few steps.

As a self-employed person in Norway, you are responsible for your own income, taxes, and insurance. You will need to register with the Norwegian Tax Administration (Skatteetaten) to operate legally.

Detailed step-by-step guide on how an expat can register as self-employed in Norway

Here is a detailed step-by-step guide on how an expat can register as self-employed in Norway:

  1. Check if you are eligible: Before registering, make sure you are eligible to work as a self-employed person in Norway. You need to have a valid work visa or be a Norwegian resident.

  2. Choose your legal structure: As a self-employed person, you have two legal structures to choose from: sole proprietorship or a limited liability company (AS).

  3. Register with the Norwegian Tax Administration (Skatteetaten): You must register your business with the Norwegian Tax Administration before you can start operating. You can register online or by completing a paper form. You will need to provide your personal details, business name, legal structure, and a description of your business activities.

  4. Apply for an Organization Number (Organisasjonsnummer): An Organization Number is a unique identifier that all businesses in Norway must have. You can apply for an Organization Number online, and it is free.

  5. Open a Norwegian bank account: To receive payments and pay taxes, you will need to open a Norwegian bank account. You can do this online or in person at a bank branch. You will need to provide identification and proof of address.

  6. Register for Value Added Tax (VAT): If your annual turnover is over NOK 50,000, you must register for VAT with the Norwegian Tax Administration. This allows you to charge VAT on your products or services and claim back VAT on your business expenses.

  7. Get business insurance: Consider taking out insurance to protect your business and yourself in case of accidents, illnesses, or other unforeseen circumstances. The most common insurances for self-employed people are public liability insurance, professional indemnity insurance, and personal insurance.

Can you work as a digital nomad in Norway?

Yes, you can work as a digital nomad in Norway. As long as you have a valid work visa or are a Norwegian resident, you can work from anywhere in the world as long as you pay taxes in Norway.

However, keep in mind that you may need to meet certain requirements to obtain a Norwegian work visa, such as having a job offer, starting a business, or studying in Norway. You should also check with your home country’s tax authorities to ensure you are not double-taxed on your income.

Breakdown of how an expat can start a company in Norway

Starting a company in Norway is a straightforward process that requires a few steps. The most common legal structure for businesses in Norway is a limited liability company (AS).


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Detailed step-by-step guide on how an expat can set up a company in Norway

Here is a detailed step-by-step guide on how an expat can set up a company in Norway:

  1. Choose your legal structure: The first step in setting up a company in Norway is to choose your legal structure. The most common structure for small and medium-sized businesses is a limited liability company (AS). An AS offers limited liability protection to the shareholders and requires a minimum share capital of NOK 30,000.

  2. Reserve a company name: Before registering your company, you must reserve a name with the Brønnøysund Register Centre. You can check the availability of the name on their website and reserve it for up to six months.

  3. Register your company: Once you have reserved your company name, you can register your company with the Brønnøysund Register Centre. You can do this online or by completing a paper form. You will need to provide personal and business details, including the name of the company, the legal structure, the purpose of the company, and the names of the directors and shareholders.

  4. Open a Norwegian bank account: You must open a Norwegian bank account for your company to receive payments and pay taxes. You can do this online or in person at a bank branch. You will need to provide identification and proof of address.

  5. Register for tax: You must register your company for tax with the Norwegian Tax Administration (Skatteetaten). You can do this online or by completing a paper form. You will need to provide personal and business details, including the name of the company, the legal structure, and an estimate of your annual income.

  6. Register for Value Added Tax (VAT): If your annual turnover is over NOK 50,000, you must register for VAT with the Norwegian Tax Administration. This allows you to charge VAT on your products or services and claim back VAT on your business expenses.

  7. Get business insurance: Consider taking out insurance to protect your business and yourself in case of accidents, illnesses, or other unforeseen circumstances. The most common insurances for businesses are public liability insurance, professional indemnity insurance, and personal insurance.

Incentives or Programs for Expats in Norway

There are several incentives and programs available to encourage expats to become self-employed or set up a company in Norway. Here are some examples:

  1. Start-up Norway: Start-up Norway is a government initiative that provides funding, mentorship, and networking opportunities to start-up businesses in Norway. The programme offers free office space, seed funding, and access to a network of experienced entrepreneurs.

  2. Innovation Norway: Innovation Norway is a government agency that provides funding and support to businesses in Norway. The agency offers grants, loans, and equity investments to help businesses grow and expand.

  3. Norwegian Centre for Entrepreneurship: The Norwegian Centre for Entrepreneurship is a non-profit organisation that provides training and support to entrepreneurs in Norway. The centre offers mentorship, workshops, and networking opportunities to help entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses.

  4. Skattefunn: Skattefunn is a tax credit that allows businesses to claim back up to 20% of their eligible research and development expenditure. To be eligible, your business must be carrying out research and development activities in Norway.

In conclusion, self-employment and business start-ups in Norway are accessible to expats with a relatively simple process. The Norwegian government provides ample support and incentives to encourage entrepreneurs to start their own businesses in the country. With the right legal and financial advice, expats can take advantage of these opportunities and build successful businesses in Norway.


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